"To sum up, all in all, I absolutely loved this book."
Flavia Alba, adopted daughter of the much loved Falco, has adopted his calling as an investigator. As a young, widowed and attractive woman she can go where more manly characters cannot go but is also more vulnerable (not that she pays much attention to that). In this, her second case, she is called in to assist Manlius Faustus, a plebian aedile, in a case involving the death of two newly married Romans. The main question relates to the extent to which the household slaves are responsible either directly or by failing in their responsibility to defend their owners. Fearing the worst they have fled for sanctuary to the Temple of Ceres, where their presence is a considerable embarrassment.
As Flavia learns more about the household and the arrangements set in place by the merging of two households instituted by the wedding, she discovers undercurrents of lust, jealousy and fear that contribute to all that happens. As she gets closer to the answer she herself comes into danger. In the end Flavia's cool understanding of human nature and attention to detail leads her to unravel the mystery.